Esprit Models
Esprit History
For Sale
Other Stuff
Buying & Running
Parts & Specialists
Other Esprit Stuff

Esprit Wings and Wheels
Charting the History of the Esprit Add-ons

A lot has been made of the amount of different alloy wheels an wings (or spoilers) that have appeared on the Esprit over the years. This page plots the history of all the wheels & wings that have made the Esprit prettier and uglier, right from the pre-production silver car, to last Esprit to be producted, the 2002 'Facelift' Esprit.

Only 7 different wings (or spoilers) have appeared on production Esprits. The first Esprit to wear a wing was the Limited addition 1988 X180R for the American market, with all but the GT3 and V8-GT sporting different wings up to present day, with several models wearing the same wings through updates. You may not have noticed, but there also been changes to the rear transom, which is the lip on the boot. This has changed in size and style over the years depending on the wing that's been fitted. You can read more about wings here.

As for wheels, the Esprit has worn 13 different alloys, going from 14" on the S1 to 18" on the S4s through to the current V8. Tyres have gone from 195f/205r on the S1 to a massive 245f/315r on the 300 sport. Makes such as OZ, BBS, AWI and Wolfrace have all tried to make the Esprit's feet more appealing through the years.

Lotus Silver Car

The original 'Silver' Giugiaro design
study was dressed in shiny Wolfrace wheels.
A smooth rear seemed to be unaware
of the need for huge downforce.

14" Wolfrace wheels make it into
production from the silver car.
No wings yet! Little change
from the concept car, although the transom (lip is a little bigger)

14" Speedlines take the place of the
Wolfrace wheels at the personal
behest of Colin Chapman.
Still no wing! but nice new
lights for the S2.

14" Speedlines get painted
gold for the JPS special.
No wing and same transom for the
Black & Gold special.

New BBS alloys grow an inch
to 15", same spec as more
powerful Turbo.
No wing or modified transom needed for the 160bhp S3.

15" Compomotive alloys are found
on early Turbos and Essex before
being replaced by BBS.
A special and a Turbo and
still no wing! But the Transom does some of the work. A big lip for the first turbo.
15" BBS alloys are the
same as the less powerful S3.
Over 200bhp and
still no wing, it might take
off if it doesn't get one soon! But don't panic, the transom still there.


15" Lotus designed OZ Route alloys
show a marked change in style.
No wing yet, but the
Turbo gets some glass! As you can see the Transom has reduced due to the newer aerodynamics of the stevens shape.

15" on the front and 16" on the rear
Lotus designed OZ Route alloys.
First Wing to appear on an Esprit, the SE enjoyed 2 different wings, a low one from 1989-1991 and a high one from 1992-1993. No noticeable change to the transom.


Split-rims for the Limited Edition Racecar Celebration for the American Market only. Expensive and rare!
Modified SE wing, or more likely a replica from the actural racecar. The X180R was a limited edition for the American Market, with only 20 being made. $126,000 new!
Notice how it's attached to the rear lip,
unlike the SEs. This won't be seen again till the S4S.

New 17" OZ 5 spoke alloy show off
the S4's new bodywork.
Wing number 3, or is it 4, gets higher
and closer to aid rear visability. The Transom is also redesigned along with other bodywork mods for the S4

New split-rim OZ alloys,
16" on the front, 17" on the rear,
also wearing the largest tyres to ever
appear on an Esprit 245f/315r.
A Large swooping wing, the first
not to be attached to the raising boot,
making putting anything in the
rear a bit of an up and under.

OZ 'Futura' Split-Rim 3-piece alloys, 17" on the front, 18" on the rear. These will be the largest the Esprit will ever wear as the last 'Facelift' Esprit sticks with the same size. Poor lacquer on the dishes proved a problem for many owners Stolen from the 300 Sport the S4S won't be taking off with that on the back. Transom unchanged.
Split-rim OZ 'Futura' Split-Rim 3-piece alloys from the S4S still 17" on the front, 18" on the rear. The 3rd model to sport the same wing with the same Transom. A popular wing to add to earlier models. See here.
'AWI' 6-spoke monobloc alloys and one of the most popular, getting rare now, still 17" on the front, 18" on the rear. New wheels, New interior, same wing
Standard on SE, opional on the GT.

5-spoke OZ alloys, 17" all round.
Same as S4 model.
Back to the good/bad
old days with no wing. Transom is larger to stabilize handling

OZ Racing 'Saturn Plus' 6-spoke monobloc alloys still 17" on the front, 18" on the rear.
New wheels, New wing! Same style wing shape as before, but now lifted by 2 struts to aid visibility. Break light fitted to meet US Regs. Large Transom on cars without wings fitted.

OZ Racing 'Crono Magnesio' 5-spoke magnesium alloys, 17" on the front, 18" on the rear. Lightest alloy fitted to a production car at the time. Expensive!
New wing made of carbonfibre, sitting on milled aluminium pylons, with high-level brake light. Short Transom.

The new "crystal titanium" finish multi spoke OZ Racing 'Nova' alloy wheels. New wheels, Same Wing. 2002 Esprit comes with wing as standard and a short transom.

Then there's the Esprits with a different models wing on

home email news esprit models road tests buying an esprit running an esprit esprit owners maintenance pictures for sale history Lotus models links